CAA Preview: Delaware Blue Hens

By: PJ Wright (@PJWright34)

delawareHead Coach: Martin Ingelsby (first season)

Last Season: 7-23 (2-16), 10th in CAA

Losses:

  • G Kory Holden (17.7 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 2nd team All-CAA)
  • F Maurice Jeffers (5.2 ppg, 4.8 rpg)
  • F Marvin King-Davis (14.8 ppg, 9.0 rpg, 3rd team All-CAA)
  • G Sean Locke (0.7 ppg, 0.3 rpg)

Newcomers:

  • F Jacob Cushing (Fr., Naperville, Ill./Neuqua Valley)
  • G Ryan Daly (Fr., Ardmore, Pa./Archbishop Carroll)
  • G Alex Sorensen (Fr., Rockville Centre, N.Y./South Side)
  • G Darian Bryant (So., 1.2 ppg, 0.8 rpg at George Washington in 2014-15)
  • F Derrick Woods (So., St. Bonaventure)

It’s hard to fathom that not too long ago, Delaware sat atop the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) as champions. After winning the 2014 CAA Tournament, the Blue Hens finished the last two campaigns 10-20 and 7-23, respectively. What was once a promising young unit is now looking up from the very cellar of the CAA as the team with the conference’s worst record in the 2015-16 season (2-16).

Going into last season, point guard Kory Holden and forward Chivarsky Corbett were both coming off CAA all-rookie honors and were the second and third highest scorers, respectively, amongst freshmen in the conference.

Holden, who led the Blue Hens in scoring and earned All-CAA 2nd team honors, transferred to South Carolina in the offseason, which will certainly put a whole in the Delaware backcourt in the upcoming year. He finished third in the league in scoring (17.7 ppg), fourth in 3-point shooting (38.8 percent), fourth in assists (4.2 apg) eighth in free-throw shooting (79.5 percent), and set a Delaware record by swishing all of his 15 free-throw attempts in an overtime loss at Towson.

Delaware also loses their second leading scorer and 3rd team All-CAA forward Marvin King-Davis to graduation. King-Davis finished the campaign with 14.8 points per game and 9.0 rebounds per game.

With leading scorers Kory Holden and Marvin King-Davis gone, the bottom-dwelling Blue Hens will rely on senior Cazmon Hayes. (Image Credit: bluehens.com)
With leading scorers Kory Holden and Marvin King-Davis gone, the bottom-dwelling Blue Hens will rely on senior guard Cazmon Hayes. (Image Credit: bluehens.com)

Chemistry could play a major role in getting Delaware to trend upwards , as the Blue Hens will be returning a total of nine players from last year’s roster, including senior guard Cazmon Hayes, who will have to take on more of a leadership role in his senior season. Hayes scored 11.3 points per game on 36.5 percent shooting in 2015-16.

Another storyline going into the season is the addition of new head coach Martin Ingelsby. He comes into the program following the firing of Monte Ross, who had coached the Blue Hens for 11 seasons, accumulating a 132-184 record.

Ingelsby spent the last 13 seasons as a member of the Notre Dame coaching staff and helped guide the Irish to eight NCAA Tournament appearances. The 37-year-old began his coaching career as an assistant at Wagner College during the 2002-03 season before becoming Notre Dame’s coordinator of basketball operations. He spent six seasons in that position before being promoted to assistant coach in 2009.

Ingelsby has already gotten a chance to see a CAA foe while in the 2015 NCAA tournament, when his Fighting Irish squeaked out a narrow victory against the Northeastern Huskies 69-65 in Pittsburgh.

Bottom Line

Delaware is returning nine of the players from last year’s 7-23 team. However, only two (Hayes, Anthony Mosley) were starters. After losing their top two scorers and bringing in a brand new head coach, the Blue Hens are about to enter a rebuilding process. What was once a promising young core is now a program that must be reconstructed from the bottom up. Expect this team to finish last in the CAA once again – or at least close to it.

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